Some early shots of Burning Man 2005 from Camp Kanukistan.
Well, Hey, It's night one of our trek out to Burning Man. Using a combination of Ritalin, (No worries, it's prescribed for my ADD and I never take as much as I'm supposed to), and Redbull I managed to drive this big, overloaded, rumbling RV for seven and a half hours north towards Sacramento, with just a few short bathroom breaks. It's kind of like being on a boat -- you get used to the motion, the swaying from side to side when either one of us moves, and then you, or I feel a little dizzy and weird when I get out and am standing on solid ground.
We're parked in some kind of RV, Trucker, traveling plaza place; Flying J's, I think. Phil and Beau have been pushing me for days to hurry up and get to Phil's so they can see each other, but it takes as long as it takes, and since they aren't doing all of the work -- the hard work of making lists of things to bring, buy, and buy to make, the money gathering, and money spending, and car loading, and unloading, and RV packing -- they just don't understand what really goes into all of the pretrip preparations. I have to be certain that we will have enough of our basic provisions to get us through a week in the scorching hot desert without access to any of the things we take for granted out here every day. I have to have enough to keep us happy, healthy, comfortable, costumed, and well fed. It isn't easy.
I come here as a documentarian and a spiritual pilgrim. I bring enthusiasm, joy, help, compassion, kindness, generosity, humour, appreciation, and creativity. I also bring tangible gifts of toys and healthy snacks for the kids, all kinds of things that light up at night to delight passing ravers, and spirits; beer and chocolate for our village Mayor, (since these are the only things he asks for every year and we have to find some way to thank him for all of his organizational sacrifice), Patron Silver Tequila and Champagne for friends, a bunny costume for the Billion Bunny March, drums and guitars to join in and make music with other musicians, bright, neon-green, fake-fur covered bikes, costumes and more costumes, computers, a printer, a laminating machine, all kinds of things for my hair; flowers, bugs, tiaras, ribbons, and rhinestones, lots and lots of food for us, and for Kidsville's nightly potluck dinners, lots and lots of water for us, and to fill our large commercial garden sprayer with to hose down overheated people when they walk by, and stamps for the grouchy postal workers at Black Rock's There's No Team in Fuck You Post Office. I collect stories, take photographs, form and reform friendships and clans, find my center, realize that there is so much I need to let go of and change in my life, and come back a better person, full of hope and ideals, for a time. Then life, like sand, washes everything but the deepest bit of it away, and life moves on until the next year.
I am so tired of packing and so relieved that we've finally left home and that part of this journey is behind me. There are still a few more things that I'll have to get tomorrow morning, but aside from that, I'm done with the worrying part of preparing for this event. It's all downhill happiness from here; seeing fellow Burners along the road -- the look of friendly, mutual joy over having discovered a fellow sister/brother pilgrim. People honk and wave. At gas stations we trade stories, ideas, and addresses. "Where are you staying?" "Oh, we're Kidsville, 5:30 and Ego." "Well, come by to see you." But we know this will never happen, because it never does, and that's okay.
This year's street names are; Amnesia, Bipolar, Catharsis, Delirium, Ego, Fetish, Gestalt, and Hysteria. I thought we were going to be super close to center camp but it's starting to look like we may be a bit further away than normal, and that's going to suck for the kids.
As I drive, with nothing more to do than try to tune in anything interesting on the radio, and watch the endless agricultural scenery, spotting our fellow travelers is an exciting event. Beau will shout down to me from the bed above the cab, "Mom, I think those guys are going to Burning Man." We'll look for tell tale signs; decorated or screwy looking bikes strapped to the back of cars or tied to roofs, colored hair or dreads, tattoos, piercings, unusual clothing, bits and pieces of art projects poking out from under tarps, bizarre looking golf art carts mounted atop tow hitches, or any moving vehicle associated with a couch in any way. Beep, beep, hello friend.
We see the familiar sights, the Angeles National Forest, the first Pyramid Lake, and then the endless vistas of fields and orchards. Button Willow, with it's quaint name. Pinoche and Little Pinoche which in Spanish sound suspciously like Vagina and Little Vagina and always make me laugh.
We stopped at a Subway to get Beau his favorite foot long veggie sandwich, and saw a fluffy tailed wild cat in the parking lot. I always hope that I'll be able to coax one of these cats into the motor home one of these days, but it would be as impractical a thing to do as it is improbable. They run as soon as they spot me, but that doesn't stop me from getting side orders of sandwich chicken to feed to them.
We listened to Bob Marley on the CD player and sang all of the songs together, along with the music. Then we played Scott's CD, twice. We spotted our first trucks filled with fruits and veggies. Tonight we saw Roma tomatoes, and little oranges. Then, when we pulled in here we saw, wait for this, a Krispy Kreme doughnut truck. We stood in the doorway of our RV watching the man outload a large cart filled with freshly gown glazed doughnuts and tried to imagine how much fun it would be to hijack one of these trucks, but in the end opted for the more traditional approach and simply went inside and bought some.
We did not see any Aliens, (My ex sister-in-law famously saw a large alien craft along this same stretch of highway many years ago and none of us have ever forgotten it), but I remain hopeful.
My computer is telling me that there is actually a wireless signal here in this parking lot but that seems super doubtful. I'll give it a try anyway, otherwise I'll post this tomorrow from our friend Phil's house in Grass Valley.
Great big happy again hugs,
PS: Thanks for your support when I was feeling a wee bit bluish lately. I so appreciate it!!!
PPS: Did I mention how hot it is here?
And OMG look at this, Sex In a Can Lady.